Johanna Halperin moved to New Hampshire in 2004 to start a business and quickly fell in love with the small state with so much to offer. Originally from the Finger Lakes region of New York, Johanna attended Bryn Mawr college in Pennsylvania where she studied biology and was involved in performing on stage, a love she had since she was a small child. Johanna earned both her Masters and PhD in Ecology, Behavior and Evolution from Boston University focusing on the study of kin recognition in bats. Although much of her field work was conducted in New Hampshire, she rarely saw the state in the daylight! After earning her doctorate, Johanna taught biology at Boston University. While living in the Boston area, Johanna and her husband, whom she met in a college theatre production, continued their involvement in the performing arts, serving on community theatre boards, producing, appearing on stage and helping to found a new group in Natick, Massachusetts.
In 2004, after the birth of their second daughter, Johanna and her husband moved to New Hampshire to found, with their sister and brother-in-law, the Winnipesaukee Playhouse, a year round theatre now located in Meredith. The organization produces professional, educational and community theatre productions and provides opportunities for all ages to be involved in the performing arts. As Co-founder of the Playhouse, Johanna helped build the now thriving organization from the ground up and was inspired by how her small non-profit was embraced by the New Hampshire community. She was also heartened by how impactful viewing or participating in theatre could be on the lives of individuals of all ages and how even a small organization could help make central New Hampshire a more culturally rich place to live. At the end of 2014, Johanna left her full time position at the Playhouse and is finding other ways she can make a difference in her community.
Johanna and her family enjoy living in New Hampshire and especially relish the natural beauty and sense of shared experience that a small state provides. She is excited to be a part of the Stay Work Play team and is especially interested in fostering the creative and sustainable economies of the region.